We actually have patriots gleaming with prophetic light.
Aug12

We actually have patriots gleaming with prophetic light.

There was deep elation in abundant corners of America yesterday as Joe Biden announced that Sen. Kamala Harris is his choice for a running mate in the coming presidential election.  In this nadir of our national suffering and reckoning, a burst of light broke through the unrelenting clouds that hang over us–from the unforgiving pandemic to the trembling clamor for racial justice. I am throwing nostalgia away–it is a...

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It’s still America.
Jul30

It’s still America.

OCEANSIDE, Ca: I am presenting this missive during the thickly arduous days of mid-summer, 2020. Our nation is gripped by immersed disease, painful racial reckonings, and a suffocating lack of thoughtful leadership. Because we are so crushingly interconnected, wired, opinionated, and free, our national tendency to bewail and even condemn ourselves sometimes weighs us down with self-flagellation and remorse and some sense that we are...

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With virtual Baseball comes a base-hit of American hope.
Jul27

With virtual Baseball comes a base-hit of American hope.

  Foul ball: like everything else, Baseball has had to adjust, as best it can, to the dreary realities of 2020. Ejection from game: the Miami Marlins have already suffered a multiple outbreak of COVID-19 and can only hope that the players affected and others threatened will all be okay.  But the precarious opening of the 2020 “season” calls for a reflection on all that is enduring about the game itself. Players and fans...

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John Lewis, the “boy from Troy.”
Jul19

John Lewis, the “boy from Troy.”

[Revised and edited edition.] John Lewis, a sharecropper’s son, will lie in state this week under the rotunda of the United States capitol. As a seventeen-year-old lad from the gravely impoverished Troy, Ala., John Lewis decided to write a letter to Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in Montgomery. Lewis had breathlessly followed the recent narrative there of King, Rosa Parks, and others during the successful eleven-month Montgomery...

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Rev. C.T. Vivian, a sweet lion, is free at last.
Jul17

Rev. C.T. Vivian, a sweet lion, is free at last.

[Even as this column was sent out, we now mourn the death of John Lewis. The Civil Rights Movement has two new stars shining in the night.] SAN DIEGO–Sometime in the blistering heat of 1965, while Martin Luther King, Jr. and his allies were marching for the nation’s first inclusive voting rights bill, a wiry, feisty, articulate Baptist minister stood up to the condescending white sheriff of Dallas County—which encompasses Selma,...

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Many Americans are broken. Most respond with dignity and patience.
Jul06

Many Americans are broken. Most respond with dignity and patience.

Not long ago, I saw and heard (on television) the anguished yet determined report of a mother whose soldier-son was killed in a far-off ambush in Afghanistan.  The news media, which drowns us with equal parts information and hyperbole, was trying to extract a statement from her—a woman reeling from fresh grief—about whether or not the current president had phoned her.  (He hadn’t.) We absolutely do not feel personally safe in the...

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